European leaders stress vital role of UN in tackling global challenges

22 September 2011

From addressing climate change and helping the poor to defending human rights and preventing conflicts, the United Nations plays a vital role in responding to today’s global challenges, several European leaders stressed.

“The road to reaching a solution to any of the key global problems we have in mind always leads us to the United Nations or its specialized agencies,” President Bronislaw Komorowski of Poland said in an address to the annual general debate of the General Assembly.

He said the UN remains “indispensable” in its role, as defined in the Charter and other relevant UN documents, particularly in the areas of development, security and human rights.

“Today, our Organization must ensure effective aid to the poorest and those in real need. They are the ones that are hardest hit by crises,” he stated. “Our responsibility is to limit the scourge of hunger in the world, help in combating the pandemics and in providing access to drinking water.”

Issues such as ensuring security, respect for human rights and transitions towards democracy all depend on the communication, negotiations and the ability to compromise, said Mr. Komorowski, adding that in this regard, “the role of the UN is irreplaceable.”


Željko Komšic, Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina sees the role of the UN and its agencies as “central” for resolving key issues of international significance, and therefore supports the Secretary-General’s efforts to reform the world body, the Chairman of the Presidency of the country, Željko Komšic, told the Assembly in his address yesterday.“The United Nations reform, it is necessary to ensure efficient and coordinated functioning of all system agencies and bodies, bearing in mind to avoid duplication of activities in a more rational allocation of financial resources.”

He emphasized in particular the need for the Security Council to be more active in preventive diplomacy, so that it can help resolve problems and crises before they flare up. Providing timely and effective action to prevent conflicts, rather than reacting once the crisis has escalated, is more efficient and less expensive when it comes to preserving peace and security, he added.


President Danilo Türk of the Republic of Slovenia

Slovenia’s President voiced his country’s strong commitment to the UN, which he described as “an Organization of all and for all.” In his address on Wednesday, Danilo Türk highlighted in particular the mediation efforts of the UN aimed at the peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.He also drew attention to the world body’s efforts with regard to the environment and sustainable development, as well as in responding to the global economic crisis. Another priority that Slovenia shares with the UN is human rights, especially the rights of the child and human rights education.

“It is gratifying to see that today human rights are increasingly being included into official school curricula,” said Mr. Türk. “But there is still so much more we need to do to incorporate human rights learning into societies as a life-long process.”

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